In last week Thursday’s ballet practice, I had the privilege of being taught by a guest ballet teacher, Monique Rockliffe. Monique taught my current ballet teachers, Talia Scott-Parkin and Katherine Fenn. The lesson started off with some basic moves at the barre just so that Monique could asses how far along our Grade 3 syllabus we were at. After that, to say she worked us is an understatement. Due to her years of ballet, dance and choreography experience, she has a certain ‘aura’ about her. Her precision is impeccable and her expectation of you to execute the moves correctly is proof of her professionalism.
Our port de bras sequence was tough. She is very particular about weight placement (which I’m still trying to master) and ensuring that your 1st position is in front of the belly button and NOT in front of the boobs. You can’t help but chuckle quietly as you re-adjust your previously wrong placement. But with that said, I enjoyed that class. She is South African but currently resides in the UK so for her to guest teach our class was such an honour because that would have been an experience I would have never received had I not started doing ballet.
I’m not a professional dancer, but I can only hope that I keep meeting and being exposed to incredible people whom I can learn from, in some way or another. In ballet, you are never perfect. You are constantly a student because there is always something new to learn or an existing move to master.